An advertisement drawing similarities between a cow’s udders and women’s breasts has been banned by the Advertising Standards Board, with one ad expert labelling it “embarrassingly old-fashioned”.

The promotion, released by Perth-based cosmetics business Assure Cosmetic Centre, depicts an image of a cow’s udder accompanied by the tagline “Look familiar?”

Underneath the image is the text “Ladies, it’s time to reclaim your breasts”, intending to promote breast augmentations or breast lifts to women post-childbirth.

“The message delivered by the advertisement is crude and unambiguous: women, unless you augment your breasts, you are cows,” wrote one complainant.

“The suggestion that women can ‘reclaim’ their breasts by having them surgically augmented is absurd, as it falsely implies that an unaugmented breast is ‘lost’.

“The advertisement perpetuates the destructive and misogynistic belief that a woman’s self-worth is measured by the shape of her breasts, and that female breasts are foremost (if not exclusively) objects of sexual desire.”

Lauren Rosewarne, advertising expert and academic at the University of Melbourne, told SmartCompany this morning any advertisement connecting women’s breasts to udders in 2017 is “simply asking for trouble”.

“Gender remains a hot button issue in our culture. We’re not only in a time of heightened awareness of sexism but we’ve become a culture where advertising that offends on these grounds will be quickly called out,” she says.

“Such usage frames a company as out-of-touch, anachronistic, backwards and embarrassingly old-fashioned.”